Today I received a request to translate the URIs of the site I was developing. I am not convinced about the suggested approach because it seems to me error prone. Is translating URI paths a common practice or is it a better idea to avoid it?
I know that some piece of the URI may be translated (eg : WordPress lets the post title appear in the URI and if you change the language, the title is translated if a translation exists) but a complete URI translation seems wrong to me.
If my URI is
www.example.en/en/contacts/headquarter i can understand that this URI may be also "translated" in
www.example.en/it/contacts/sede-centrale because probably there are two "post" with those two title (one in each languages) associated with contacting headquarter.
What is asked to me is to completely translate URI so
www.example.en/en/contacts/headquarter will became
www.example.en/it/contatti/sede-centrale and that is what I don't understand.
I haven't found any examples of such behavior in other sites. I don't see benefits (a bit of cosmetics of course but nothing more) and it will probably became rapidly costly to maintain. (If the translation turns out to be wrong and is already indexed by spider what would I have to do, setup a 301 redirect?)